The COVID-19 pandemic has caused substantial uncertainty for businesses. As of March 24, 2020, the President has declared an emergency under the Stafford Act and the Minnesota Governor has declared a peacetime emergency.
Understanding complex, difficult condemnations, and knowing how to respond to them – and how best to protect his clients’ interests – is the core of Mark’s practice.
Companies with extensive property holdings are a key part of Mark’s practice. His work is nationally-known from a presentation he made to the American Law Institute – American Bar Association in 2007, “What National Companies Need to Know About Condemnation…and what Condemnors Need to Know About National Companies.” He represents and advises a leading national discount retailer in eminent domain matters across the country; one of the region’s largest convenience store groups and one of the region’s largest shopping center owners. He regularly handles eminent domain matters in Minnesota for national quick-service restaurants, mini-storage properties, auto service companies and a retail REIT.
Mark has represented the owners of smaller businesses of all kinds in taking cases involving farms, restaurants, office buildings, shopping centers and apartment buildings, as well as churches, hospitals and specialized agricultural and industrial facilities.
Following the Red River flood of 1997, he represented owners of property in North Dakota taken for the Grand Forks flood protection project, including the area’s largest nursing home and its largest private residence. He currently represents owners in both Fargo and Western North Dakota.
In connection with the construction of the new North/South (17/35) runway at the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport, he represented the Metropolitan Airports Commission in acquiring nearly $150 million of commercial property.
- Represents numerous owners of properties to be taken for SWLRT project, including owners of residential developments, office buildings, industrial properties and development properties.
- Represented owner of a full downtown block in eminent domain acquisition for the U.S. Bank Vikings Stadium. This is one of the two full blocks acquired for the stadium.
- Represented developer-owner of a downtown LRT block in eminent domain acquisition for U.S. Bank Vikings Stadium. This is the second of the two full blocks acquired for the stadium.
- Represented owner of a family farm taken for a roadway project. The award of $4.75 million exceeded the condemnor’s offer by more than $2 million.
- Represented owner of a downtown Minneapolis office building which lost parking for an expanded bike trail. Award of $1.55 million; condemnor’s offer was less than $400,000.
- Represented owners of lands taken for the new Minnesota Twins Stadium (with Daniel Rosen, Bruce Malkerson). After five weeks of hearings and an award of $23 million, the matter was settled for more than $28 million, $15 million more than the condemnor’s offer before condemnation.
- Represented owners of lands taken for the new Guthrie Theatre along the Mississippi River in Minneapolis. The award was more than $5 million; the condemnor’s quick-take was less than $2 million.
- Represented owners of development land in the Northwest suburbs of Minneapolis that was bisected by a trunk sewer line. The award was nearly $3 million; the condemnor’s offer was less than $150,000.
- Represented owners of one of the last family farms within the 494-694 loop in a partial taking by a school district. Award of $4 million more than doubled the condemnor’s valuation.
- Represented owners of a theatre property on Hennepin Avenue in downtown Minneapolis taken for redevelopment. The award of approximately $3 million roughly tripled the condemnor’s valuation.
- Represented a shopping center owner in a partial taking in which loss of visibility and parking impacted rents and occupancy. The award was more than $4 million; more than five times greater than the condemnor’s offer.
- Represented a large store retailer when a road project cut across its parking lot. On behalf of the retailer, obtained an amendment to local setback ordinances that allowed the store to regain enough parking spaces to continue in operation. Even with this mitigation, the final award of nearly $3 million was almost three times the condemnor’s offer.
- Represented a Grand Forks, North Dakota homeowner whose property was taken for a flood diversion project. Compensation achieved through both eminent domain and related relocation laws was nearly $2 million, more than triple the condemnor’s offer.
- Represented a Milwaukee, Wisconsin landowner in a federal regulatory takings claim under the Tucker Act against the United States involving the Corps of Engineers refusal to issue permits for development. After eight years of litigation, the matter was resolved by the government paying the owner the as-developed market value of the property and his attorneys’ fees.
Work for Developers
- Represented a Minneapolis-based commercial developer in acquiring land for a large office park in Northeast Minneapolis. Work included both acquisition through purchase and coordinating with local development authority on use of eminent domain.
- Represented a national developer based in Minnesota in acquiring land for the corporate headquarters of a major electronics retailer. Work included acquisition of 86 properties and coordination of relocation for owners and tenants, but excluded the litigated eminent domain matter.
- Represented a housing developer in connection with the relocation issues necessary for the reconstruction of one of the Twin Cities’ largest and most recognized affordable housing projects. Worked with the developer in forming a plan that allowed for the relocation of more than 1,300 tenants during the project.
- Represented a national developer in acquiring properties on Nicollet Mall for one of the area’s premier office towers. Acquisition work included commercial relocation issues and the use of eminent domain.
Work for Utility Companies
- Represented a major natural gas utility in the acquisition of a 12 mile natural gas corridor in the Northern Minneapolis suburbs.
- Represented a large electrical Co-op in the acquisition of a 2.1 mile longitudinal power line easement on an active Minnesota railroad corridor.
Articles & Presentations
PUBLICATIONS & PRESENTATIONS
- Speaker, “Challenges to the Western Idea of Property,” 14th Annual Brigham-Kanner Property Rights Conference, College of William and Mary Law School, Williamsburg, VA, October 13, 2017
- Speaker, “Effects of Sea Level Rise on Property Rights,” 13th Annual Brigham-Kanner Property Rights Conference, The Hague, Netherlands, October 21, 2016
- Presenter, “Access & Visibility: How to Approach the Case for the Courtroom, “ALI-CLE, Austin, TX, January 2016
- Presenter, “Highest and Best Use and the Challenges of the Market,” ALI-CLE, San Francisco, CA, February 2015
- Panelist, “The Commissioners A to Z,” with Bruce Malkerson, Minnesota CLE, Minneapolis, MN, February 2015
- Speaker, “Defining the Essence of Property,” 10th Annual Brigham-Kanner Property Rights Conference, College of William and Mary Law School, Williamsburg, VA, October 18, 2013
- Presenter, “The Changing Law of Visibility,” 30th Annual ALI-CLE Eminent Domain and Land Valuation Conference, Miami, FL, January 24-26, 2013
- Author, “Minnesota” chapter, The Law of Eminent Domain – Fifty State Survey, ed. by W. Blake, American Bar Association, 2012
- Presenter, “Two Comments on Common Sense and Eminent Domain,” American Law Institute – American Bar Association, San Diego, CA, January 2012
- Panelist, “Current Issues: Condemnation, Zoning, Land Use Law And Practice,” Minnesota State Bar Association, Real Estate Institute, St. Paul, MN, November 2010
- Co-Author, “Assessing and Mitigating the Zoning Impacts of A Partial Taking,” with Carol Lansing, in Condemnation, Zoning and Land Use 2009 Annual Review, American Bar Association, 2009
- Co-Presenter, “Apportionment Of Condemnation Awards Among Lessors, Lessees And Lenders,” with Elyse Tish, Walgreen Company, American Law Institute – American Bar Association, Miami, FL, January 2009
- Presenter, “Extending The Limits Of Just Compensation, The Biggest House in Town,” American Law Institute – American Bar Association, San Francisco, CA, January 2008
- Co-Presenter, “A Real Estate Attorneys’ Survival Guide: What You Need To Know About Real Property Valuation and Appraisals,” with Bruce Malkerson and Robert Strachota, MAI, Minnesota State Bar Association, Real Estate Institute, St. Paul, MN, November 2007
- Lecturer, “Legal Issues In Valuation,” University of St. Thomas, Graduate Program in Real Estate, Minneapolis, MN, January 2007
- Presenter, “What National Companies Need To Know About Condemnation…And What Condemnors Need To Know About National Companies,” American Law Institute-American Bar Association, Miami, FL, January 2007
Honors & Education
- University of Minnesota Law School, J.D., cum laude, 1986
- Stanford University, Ph.D., 1976
- Stanford University, M.A., 1970
- Kenyon College, B.A., 1967
- Minnesota, 1986
- U.S. District Court for the District of Minnesota, 1986
- U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit, 1989
- U.S. Court of Federal Claims, 1993
- U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, 2006
- U.S. Supreme Court, 1995
- The Best Lawyers in America, Eminent Domain and Condemnation Law, 2007-present
- Best Lawyers’ “Lawyer of the Year” in Minneapolis Eminent Domain and Condemnation Law, 2013, 2019
- Minnesota Law Review, 1984-1986
- Co-Chair, Ramsey County District Court Working Group on Eminent Domain, 2012-2013
- Lecturer, for Professor Alex Klass, University of Minnesota Law School, 2007-2013
- Lecturer for Professor Thomas Musil, University of St. Thomas Graduate Program in Real Estate Appraisal, 2007
- Co-chair, Minnesota State Bar Association Eminent Domain CLE, 2005-2006
- Lecturer for Professor Evan Rice, William Mitchell Law School, 2005-2006
- Jury Instruction Guide Sub-committee for Eminent Domain, 2005
- President, Beth Jacob Congregation, Mendota Heights, MN, 2005-2007
- President, Hillel Foundation, University of Minnesota, 1999-2001